Okay, so the thought of eating bugs makes most of us cringe and let out a “bleeeeeck” sound, but you may find yourself in a predicament where you have run out of food storage and have no choice but to consume these creepy crawlers in order to survive. Here at Well Prepared, we want to make sure you’re ready for anything, and that’s why we’re covering edible bugs today.
The first bug on this list is the easiest to find and catch and is also one that I have personally tried. They actually taste pretty good, almost like you’re eating a tasty sugary treat, and they can be boiled to neutralize any acid. If you do eat them raw, be sure to kill them first to avoid being bitten (this is true for any bug you decide to eat). You can find them all over, and if you have a few anthills around, you’ve got some additional food for surviving. The only problem is their size; you’ll have to eat at least a hundred or two, but at least they reproduce quite quickly. Just be careful not to eat a queen if you can help it so you can keep your supply replenished if necessary.
It’s a little ironic that arguably the most disgusting-looking bug on this list is also one of the most common and easy to find and catch. They also don’t taste too bad from what I’ve heard as long as they’re roasted. Roasted grubs are said to have a “nutty flavor” so you won’t have to worry about them being overly difficult to consume. Use a long stick to skewer them lengthwise and roast them over an open flame until the skin is crisp. They can be caught in rotten logs or rocks, and hidden beneath the bark of live trees.
Grasshoppers / Crickets
Protein-rich grasshoppers and crickets may be just what the prepper ordered when you’re surviving without food. Grasshoppers can be caught during the day (early morning is best, as they’re slower at this time), while crickets can be caught at night in dark, damp places like logs, rocks, and other big objects. You may also want to check in trees, shrubs, and tall grasses. A jar or bottle in both cases may be needed to catch them unless you’re planning to catch them by hand.
In the case of crickets, it’s a little harder to see them to catch them, so you might have to set a trap using the container. It’s important that you choose a container that makes it difficult for the bug to escape once they’ve fallen in. Put some overripe fruit or a glowstick in the bottom of the container, which will attract the crickets inside, and then bury it up to the brim for easy access. They’ll go into the container and you’ll find yourself with a meal by the next morning. Crickets and grasshoppers can both be prepared the same way: pulling off their heads to remove the internal organs (this prevents you from getting bacteria in your body) and then remove the legs and wings. Finally, roast them with a pan or skewer over a fire.
These wood-infesting bugs are easy to find — old logs that are full of holes are good places to start — and even easier to cook. Like grasshoppers, grubs, and crickets, they can be dry roasted in a pan. Catching them is easy, but if you really want to get a jump on survival, you can make a termite trap.
To make a termite trap, simply take a plastic storage box that’s about the size of a shoebox and cut several 2-3 inch holes into the 4 sides. Next, stuff the box with damp cardboard (wood-eaters like wood, after all).
Search for termite nests beneath rotting logs and under the bark of dead trees. Your trap should be located about a foot away from the nest, buried so that the top of the box is flush with the ground’s surface. Cover the lid with a thin layer of earth and secure it in place with a rock. The termites will establish feeding tunnels to the box. Remove the cardboard from time to time as it gets covered in termites — these are what you can eat — but don’t remove the plastic box itself. Instead, leave it in place so as not to disturb the tunnels and keep your food supply going.